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Pastor Jeff Vanderford is the Lead Pastor and church planter of Authentic Life Church. Jeff and his family moved to Tucson, AZ from Kansas City, MO in January of 2014. He and his wife, Jessica, were married in 2004 and have two sons; Jaxton, born in 2012 and Brody born in 2013. He is a sports fan and loves his Kansas Jayhawks, Kansas City Royals, and Kansas City Chiefs.

Jeff answered the call to plant a church near I-10 and Kolb. Jeff, Jessica, and Authentic Life have a desire to reach the lost with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, build relationships with those in the community, and train up disciples. Feel free to contact Pastor Jeff with any questions or needs. He would love to connect with you and talk Authentic Life


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Pastor Jamie Vernoy

Jamie Vernoy is the Pastoral Intern (Church Planting) at Authentic Life Church.

Jamie and Jennefer were married in July 2010 in Springfield, MO. Jamie's parents were missionaries in Venezuela for 13 years. Jennefer was born and raised in Springfield,MO.  Jamie graduated from Baptist Bible College in 2013. Since, they have lived in Snyder, Texas where Jamie has served as lead youth pastor for 3.5 years. They enjoy going for walks in the morning and enjoy camping outdoors. They have one son, Judah James who was born in 2016. God has since moved the Vernoy's to Tucson, AZ to begin and internship with the intent on planting a church in Tucson.


Levi Hedgepeth has been serving as a volunteer at Authentic Life since the spring of 2015. After becoming a member in the late fall of the same year, Levi has been dedicated to bringing others to the feet of Jesus as we spend time in worship. Levi became the official worship leader in June of 2016. Levi has spent time abroad in India doing mission work, as well as serving in Mexico and with the homeless in our local community.

During the week, Levi serves his community using his degree in psychology as a Behavior Specialist in the Vail School District. He and his family (wife Britnee, sons Luke and Beckett)  live and go to school within the Vail community. Having gone to school in and graduated from Vail schools, Levi is dedicated to serving our community and bringing others closer to God. 


Jessica Vanderford is Authentic Life's KidsLife Director.  Her goal is to provide Christ-centered curriculum in a safe, and fun, interactive environment. Jessica has been working with children since 2001 in both secular and Christian environments. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Biblical Studies from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and is pursuing a Masters of Education from Grand Canyon University, along with an Arizona teaching license. Pastor Jeff and Jessica were married in 2004 and have two sons, Jaxton and Brody. They are also licensed foster parents for the state of Arizona since 2014.

Dan and Laurie Thomas  lead the Connection Team at Authentic Life Church.  Their mission is to make sure all visitors feel valued, connected and cared for.  They do this with warm smiles, authentic conversation and pretty darn good coffee and snacks.

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And… if you are looking for a place to plug in, a place to get connected, grow in your faith and live that faith out in a community that cares for one another – they can help…  You’ll find Dan at the gates every Sunday morning and his wife by the coffee bar, come and say, “hello”!

Dan and Laurie have been married 18 years and have 9-year-old twins.  The Thomas family joined Authentic Life Church at its foundation.  Their heart for their family was to raise their children up in a “missional” atmosphere; teaching and training their children to love the Lord and serve his Kingdom.



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Sam Johnston has been at Authentic Life since its launch in 2014.  He and his wife, Kim, moved from Kansas City, MO along with Pastor Jeff to help begin this new church in South East Tucson.  As a Life Group leader, he has a desire to dig deeper into God’s Word and grow together with other believers.  When we actually live out the lives Christ has for us, the message of the Bible becomes so much more clear.

Sam has been married since June of 2013 and have two beautiful little girls, Paycyn and Montgomery.  As a family, we know that God could lead us anywhere, but we seek to grow together and grow in Him.